Somewhere along the way, Superman’s fight for truth, justice and the American way came to a standstill. We don’t know when it happened, we don’t know why it happened, but it seems as if Superman is the only one left fighting this battle anymore.
The sunny optimism that once fueled the American dream is gone. In its place is a dark, cynical cloud that follows us everywhere and hampers our growth. Opposing views are no longer seen as potential ideas or a path to the common ground. They are seen as open hostilities and hyperbolic acts of war.
Hands aren’t shaken, they are batted away. Loss isn’t accepted, it’s challenged in court. The Court of Law is obsolete, and we have become slaves to the court of public opinion, where mob rule decides your fate.
We think so much about what we are going to say next, that we fail to listen to what is being said now. The truth is seldom searched for. Instead, we look for anecdotes that support our respective positions and prop them up in the truth’s place.
Innovation and imagination have been replaced by malaise and fear. New ideas are unacceptable because we no longer trust the unknown. We don’t invent. We don’t create anymore. We “reimagine”. There is nothing more sad to me as a writer, than “reimagining” things. “Reimagining” is giving up. You just go back to the drawing board, lock your free thoughts away and fold to the pressure of time, while ignoring the satisfaction of potentially producing something great.
Of the top ten movies based on box office projection in 2023 (as of writing this), 8 of them are either sequels or remakes.
We used to have company over at our houses and go to block parties. Now we draw the blinds when a neighbor passes by. We don’t welcome, we tribalize.
Acceptance has been cast aside in favor of approval. Conversations are now discussions. We don’t live by our virtues, we broadcast them for all to see. Even if we don’t believe in the virtues we display, the fear of retribution from an online community that knows no satisfaction outweighs the satisfaction of being content with oneself.
In turn, free thought is a rarity. Education is a joke. Sides need to be picked. Lines need to be drawn. Communities are eroding and morphing into a win at all costs dodgeball game. While we are arguing, we are failing to realize that sixty-three percent of millennials and Gen-Z have no idea as to what the holocaust is.
We have become the very thing that we used to fight. Superman would not approve of this new, bleak, downtrodden, divided America that we are now calling home. He would still fight for us all the same though because, as his father said, we lack the light to show the way.
We have become so depraved as a people, it has gotten to the point where it has become easier to celebrate somebody’s failure and ineptitude than it is to acknowledge their accomplishments.
We need to move on from this era. We have to take the next exit off of this road to nowhere and shift back into the sunlight.
Superman is one of the strongest beings in the Universe. He had his pick of the litter. He could have chosen the ideals of the British or the French. He could have conquered the whole planet by aligning with the Axis of Evil. Yet he didn’t. When he arrived on Earth, he chose a land where people dare to dream about the impossible. He backed a place where you could speak freely and openly without the fear of retribution from opposing parties.
When Superman makes his return, he needs to come back in full form. We need hope. We need optimism. We need reassurance that the American Dream isn’t dead.
James Gunn, in the off chance that you are reading this I implore you to please take this project more seriously than you have ever before. We need a light at the end of this tunnel and something as simple as a silly superhero movie can provide the spark to give us that light. We need Superman to come back in full form to show us the way back to the America that we know and love.
To end this with a quote from Superman himself: “Dreams lift us up and transform us into something better. And on my soul, I swear that until my dream of a world where Dignity, Honor, & Justice are the reality that we all share I will never stop fighting…ever!”
Those are words for us to start living by.
Happy 4th Of July! Thank You for reading. When I am not writing, I enjoy spending time with my wife, Barbara, My three year old daughter Frankie, and my Loyal Hound Marbles.